Sunday, April 29, 2012

Movie Night!

Tonight we had Family Movie Night. We usually have Family Game Night on Sundays, but Emily decided she wanted us to sit on the couch, eat popcorn and watch a movie.

We had to convince her to eat her dinner and then wait for Todd and I to finish eating before we could start Family Movie Night. Emily picked The Princess and the Frog as our movie of the night. Not surprising, since Tiana is her current, favorite Disney princess.

Since Emily is 3 years old, she didn't sit still for the whole movie. She did eat some popcorn and snuggle with us. She did get up to play with her horses before she came back to snuggle for the end of the movie.

She's seen a lot of Disney movies, but as we start planning her first trip to Disney World, I foresee more Family Movie Nights featuring Disney movies.

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Friday, April 27, 2012

Working For A Living

After being a stay at home mom for over three years, I started working again a month and a half ago. It's been a struggle so far, but I'm still hoping that it will get better.

Working has been really hard for me. Partly because my job right now is extremely boring and very repetitive. Things have been emotional too, with my grandpa passing away and then my long weekend that included my cousin's wedding.

At work, they are doing a lot of construction which is trying in itself. I've been leaving everyday with a huge migraine because of the banging going on around me. One day, the banging was above the office I work in. It was living in a college dorm room all over again.

I'm hoping that things will be a little calmer for a while. Right now, my thoughts are on Disney World and the trip that I really hope we'll be taking next October. It's one of the things that is helping keep me sane right now.

I knew that going back to work was going to be hard, but I didn't ever imagine it was going to be this hard!

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Tuesday, April 24, 2012

I Love This Age!

Having a child comes with it's ups and down. And being a parent is the hardest job I've ever had. But the hardest time, so far, was when Emily was a baby.

It didn't help that we had no help at all because of being so far away from our family. And I had undiagnosed PPD for eight months after she was born. But it was also the regular baby stuff.

I hated not knowing what she wanted and having to listen to her cry when she was very small. I loved her and I enjoyed it some when she was happy. But it's not like it is now.

Now she can tell me what she wants and needs. I love it when she dances around the living room and comes over to give me sweet kisses on the cheek. She is growing up to be such an awesome person!

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Sunday, April 22, 2012

The Long Weekend - Part 2: The Mall and Wrestling

Todd and I got up early on Sunday morning to make the four hour trek to Nashville. We had gotten tickets to a wrestling PPV (TNA Lockdown) before my cousin set his wedding date. We were going to drive down early to do some sightseeing before going to the show.

As we were driving down, we realized that there was a time change which gave us an extra hour. We had been planning to do a little sight seeing, but Todd suggested we go see The Cabin In The Woods, which had opened that weekend.

I love Joss Whedon (obviously!) but I don't like seeing scary movies in the theater without Todd, since I tend to hide in his chest when things get too scary or gory. I was bummed already that I wasn't going to see this movie opening weekend due to the amount of stuff that was already planned. So I said yes and went to my phone to find a movie theater.

I picked a theater that had 'Opryland' in the title, since I was assuming that we were still going to drive by sights. When we got there, we found that the theater was in a gigantic mall of awesome-ness. We made the mistake of parking at the other end of the mall, so we had to walk through the length of the mall before getting to the movie theater.

So we got to see that they had a Disney Store, a Lego Store and even a Crocs store! Before we even got to the movie theater we had abandoned our sight seeing plans in favor of doing some shopping. The movie was excellent - pure Joss. But I was excited to look at some of the stores.

I've been in love with Crocs since I got my first pair for our Disney honeymoon. My last pair had gotten chewed up by our newest kitty, Sam, so I needed another pair. We found the sale bins and I managed to find two pairs (one traditional and one a pair of pink flats) for $15 total! I have been so happy with them.

Next we went to the Lego store and drooled over the Lego Death Star. We didn't buy anything there because the sets are expensive. Plus the regular Lego bricks are still a little small for Emily.

Finally we ended up at the Disney Store. It had been a long time since I was in one of these since we don't have one locally anymore - they closed a bunch a few years ago as they were rebranding. Since Emily had been so good at the wedding, we wanted to get her a present. We hemmed and hawed, because of the amount of shiny Disney things. In the end, we got her three sets of toy figures - a Mickey Mouse Clubhouse set, a Pooh set and a Princess and the Frog set. They were on sale, so we got a great deal. Emily loved them and has played with them everyday (including right now!).

By the time we got done with the Disney Store, we left to go to the arena for the PPV. The doors opened not long after we got there and we managed to get inside quickly. We found our seats (which were awesome) and got some food.

It had been a while since we went to a TNA PPV - the last one was when I was newly pregnant with Emily. I was so newly pregnant that I didn't know that I was expecting a baby. Their production values are a lot lower than the WWE PPVs, but the wrestling tends to be better.

Lockdown gets its name because all the matches take place in a steel cage. It was a very good show, but I ended up yawning through the last half. The long weekend was starting to take its toll. We had an interesting pair next to us. It looked to be a grandmother with her tween grandson. She was clipping coupons after they sat down and had no interest in the show. She also kept dragging her grandson out of their seats so he missed a good portion of the show. Todd and I felt bad for the grandson.

After the show, we drove home.  Well, Todd drove and I slept most of the way. We got home and my dad and Esther were awake. They were having to leave right away because they had to get back to Michigan before 5 p.m. for an appointment. We said bye to them and I went to pass out.

It was a very fun weekend, but it was really long. I hope I don't have a weekend that packed again because I dragged all week at work because of sleep deprivation!

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Saturday, April 21, 2012

The Long Weekend - Part 1: The Wedding

Emily with her Pop-Pop
Things have been very busy as I'm still getting used to working full-time again. But we had one of the busiest weekends of my life last weekend!

I worked all day on Friday but Todd had taken the day off so we could head to GA as soon as I got home. My cousin, Gary, was getting married on Saturday and we wanted to see my dad, his wife among other relatives that had come in for the wedding.

We went straight to the hotel and met up with my dad, his wife, Esther as well as my uncle David and his fiance, Marji. We went across the street and had dinner at this Italian restaurant. The wait was going to be long, but there was no waiting if we found a table in the bar area. We were lucky and a couple was just finishing up, so we were able to get ordered faster.

It was nice to visit with my relatives. My uncle Gary, father of the groom, came to the restaurant to visit too. Even though it was several hours after Emily's bedtime before we left, she did great! The food was great too and we got creme brulee for dessert.

We were staying at my aunt and uncle's, but it wasn't very far to go there from the hotel. My aunt and uncle were home and my aunt was still working on some of the programs. I got Emily to bed and I went to bed soon after since I had been up since 5:30 that morning.

Exchanging Vows
The wedding wasn't until the afternoon, so we let Emily play in the morning. She was cranky so I got her down for a short nap before we got all dressed to head over to the wedding. We went to the hotel and got there in time to ride the trolley over to the church.

The wedding service was a full Catholic mass, so it was long. But Emily did pretty good. She was still tired so I held her for most of the service. After the wedding was over, we took the trolley back to the hotel. We hung out in my dad and Esther's hotel room until it was time to go down for the the cocktail hour.

Dancing with Pop-Pop
The cocktail hour was in a wooded area outside the hotel. They had soft music playing as well as appetizers and drinks. Emily only wanted fruit, but Todd and I tried most of the appetizers. Emily kept wanting to dance, and she convinced my dad and Todd to dance with her. 

It was a great time and it wasn't too long before it was time to go into the reception. There were three ballrooms in the hotel. One was the wedding but the other two were proms. We found our table and sat down. It wasn't too long before the bridal party made their grand entrance.

Dancing the night away
Now when I was planning my wedding, I didn't like the idea of having the first dance and other special dances before dinner was served. But it honestly worked great! Right after they were introduced, Gary and Jennifer had their first dance. Once the other special dances were done, dinner was served. Music played throughout dinner so when people were done eating they could get up to dance. 

Emily loved 'dancing' - which was mostly just chasing her cousins around the dance floor. But when more adults came out on the dance floor, she did dance some. I got to dance quite a bit too, including married couples dance were the DJ calls out for couples to leave the floor depending on how long you  have been married. Todd and I made it a few cuts, but the couple who 'won'  had been married over 40 years!

They also had a photo booth in the corner. Emily really liked this too since there were funny hats and props to wear in the picture. The booth would print two copies of the pictures, one that got put into a scrapbook for the bride and groom. It was a neat idea that kept a lot of the kids at the wedding amused.

The time passed fast, and it was nearly 10 pm before we left. Emily was going to be staying in the hotel with my dad and Esther. We did go up to say goodnight to her, but she got upset. We headed back to my aunt and uncle's house to pass out before the next leg of our long weekend on Sunday.

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Tuesday, April 10, 2012

The Problem With Paint

My weekend wasn't stellar because I dealt with a major migraine. For normal people, death of a loved one = crying, end of story. But I'm not a normal person. Crying my eyes out equals lots and lots of pain.

My migraine was waning when the weekend ended and it was time to go back to work.   Unfortunately, they are doing some construction and painting at work this week. Again, for normal people this just might be annoying. But it's been more than a little trying for me.

I work in a file room that is closed off because it's a secure room that only certain people can access. I'm a little ways away from the offices they are painting, but for some reason the paint fumes have been filtering into my file cave. It's been making my head ache like crazy.

I told my supervisor about it and she told me to go outside every hour to get some air. It helps for while I'm outside, but the fumes smell even worse when I have to go back inside.

I really try not to let my headaches rule my life, but it's weeks like this that remind me that I do have a chronic disease. Hopefully, they will be done with the painting soon and things can get back to normal.

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Friday, April 6, 2012

R.I.P. Grandpa

On Wednesday, my grandpa passed away. He was my mom's dad and my last living grandparent. I thought I would write a few thoughts about him here.

My grandpa was a gruff man who had a big heart. He loved all of us grandkids and we would spent hours during our visits to Bay City in his small house that he lived in alone. When I was a child, I knew a few kids who had divorced parents, but I was the only one with divorced grandparents. My grandpa and grandma (who passed away in 2001) were always friendly during family gatherings, so as a kid the only difference to me was that they didn't live together.

I can still smell the musky, woodsy smell that he had and that his house had. I remember sitting in his living room while my mom would gab with him at his kitchen island. I remember his love of books, something that I share, and how my mom went out of her way to make sure he had large print books when his eyes started going.

While she won't remember it, I'm glad he got a chance to see Emily and his other great-grandkids. And I'm very glad we went back home for Christmas, which was the last time I saw him. Then, even though he was very sick, he was still the same Grandpa that he had always been.

R.I.P Richard Miller Sr. - I will always love and miss you until I get to see you again.

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Monday, April 2, 2012

Wicked As They Come Book Launch Party!

Me Along With The Talented Delilah Dawson 
When I was younger, I would often drive two hours or more to hang out with friends. This was especially the case right after I graduated from college since all my friends were at least two hours away. I would often just hop in the car and go.

Now it's a little harder to do that, thanks to the fact that I'm not as young as I used to be. Not to mention the fact that I have a three year old that I usually have to haul with me. But when I found out when Delilah Dawson's book launch party, I wanted to go to it.

I had first met Delilah years ago on the forums. These forums are for fans of Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab, but it has grown to be such a great community over the years. I followed her blog and watched her on her journey to become a published author. She is an inspiration to me as I hope someday to follow in her footsteps.

Thanks to being a writer for GeekMom, I was able to get an ARC of her book, Wicked As They Come, so I could review it. It was a really wonderful book. But I was a little anxious about driving 3 1/2 hours to GA to attend the book launch party.

I was encouraged by some lovely people on the BPAL forums to go. So I arranged to take a half day at my new job and managed to avoid jury duty again, so I could go. One of the reasons I was able to go was that my aunt and uncle live in GA and fairly near to where the book launch was going to take place. So, I had a sitter for Emily so I could truly enjoy myself.

The traffic was bad but I managed to make it to my aunt and uncle's house with enough time for me to get dressed in my Ren Fair / Steampunk outfit before heading out to the party. The worst part of the evening was arriving and having to circle around to find parking. It took me nearly a half hour to find a place to park!

But I didn't miss anything! I got in and Delilah was signing books. I got in line and finally got to meet her in person. That was really shiny! But it was as I was finding a place to sit down that another BPALer noticed me!

It was Brooke, who is the owner of Villainess which is the company that makes my favorite soaps of all time. She had made soaps and perfume oils based on three characters from Wicked As They Come and had made the drive with a friend from TN.

It was a lovely party with yummy cake, a reading from the book, a fire dancer and wine! It was nice to be able to do something without Emily too since I don't get a lot of just adult time. Even though I was pretty much dead from tired for the rest of the weekend, it was well worth the drive down.

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